Many or all companies we feature compensate us. Compensation and editorial research influence how products appear on a page. Personal Loans ATV Loans & Other UTV Financing Options Updated Dec 08, 2023   |   14-min read Written by Lindsay VanSomeren Written by Lindsay VanSomeren Expertise: Mortgages, personal loans, student loans, auto loans, banking, budgeting, debt, insurance, credit cards, credit Lindsay VanSomeren is a personal finance writer living in Suquamish, Washington. She's passionate about helping people learn how to manage their money better so that they can live the life they want. In her spare time, she enjoys outdoor adventures, reading, and learning new languages and hobbies. Learn more about Lindsay VanSomeren Reviewed by Andrew Steger, CFP® Reviewed by Andrew Steger, CFP® Expertise: Holistic financial planning, nonprofit endowments, tax planning, investment management, retirement planning, trust administration, estate planning, budgeting, cash flow analysis, business succession Andrew Steger, CFP®, owns Generational Wealth Planning LLC, which provides financial planning and consulting services. Andrew assists families, executives, and business owners with planning and executing successful futures. Learn more about Andrew Steger, CFP® Whether you’re just looking to have fun cruising through backwoods trails, hunting, or getting serious work done on the farm, an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) or a utility terrain vehicle (UTV) can be a great purchase. If you’re going over extremely rugged terrain, want better control, or want to ride solo, an ATV—or a “quad” or “four-wheeler”—is your best bet, costing between $4,000 and $16,000. Meanwhile, a UTV is more akin to an all-terrain golf cart and allows two people to sit beside each other. These will run you between $8,000 and $18,000. Most people choose to finance these purchases with a dedicated ATV loan, similar to how you’d use a car loan to buy a car. However, you have multiple financing options for ATV loans, some of which may suit you better depending on your preferences and your financial situation. We’ll show you the best options so you can hit the trail sooner. Table of Contents Skip to Section Best ATV loansPros and cons of a personal loan for UTV financingHow to choose a loan for your ATV financingHow to apply for a UTV loan Alternatives to personal loans to finance an ATVATV and UTV financing FAQ Best ATV loans Financing any vehicle is usually best with a secured loan, which uses the vehicle you’re purchasing as collateral for the loan. Unfortunately, since ATVs aren’t as common as cars or even RVs, there’s not a huge market for secured ATV loans outside of credit unions, which generally aren’t open to everyone. Instead, we’ll focus on personal loans, which can be used for almost anything—including ATVs. They may be more expensive than secured ATV loans, but they are more widely available and less costly than using credit cards. Ask the expert Andrew Steger CFP® As with any loan, potential borrowers should always carefully consider their credit scores and how the future potential monthly payment could affect their budget and cash flow. Consider things such as the need for collateral, interest rates, and flexibility. Secured loans typically require collateral whereas personal loans typically do not. Personal loans may also be harder to qualify for than secured ATV loans, so we’ll break down your options by credit score since this can be one of the biggest barriers to getting approved. Luckily, with so many personal loan lenders available, there are options for people with all types of credit. Credit score categoryFICO credit scoreExcellent800 or higherGood670 – 799Fair580 – 669Poor579 or below Tip If you’re unsure of your credit score, check it for free on websites like Credit Karma. Some credit card companies and banks will also provide a more accurate FICO score—check with your financial providers. Here’s a quick rundown of the best ATV loans for each credit score range. We’ll cover each lender in more depth. LenderBest forLendEDU ratingSoFiGood credit5.0UpgradeFair credit4.9UpstartThin credit4.8LightStreamExcellent credit4.8 Ask the expert Andrew Steger CFP® One of the easiest habits to fall into that sets a potential borrower up for success is to annually check your credit report. This review can quickly catch mistakes or oversights and be a great gauge of your credit. Additionally, simple things like paying bills on time, reducing debt, and using and paying off credit cards prudently are easy ways to not only improve your credit but simultaneously improve your loan approval chances and lower interest rate. SoFi: Best for good credit View Rates Powered by Credible LendEDU rating: 5.0Offers bonus financial perks like free financial planning and career counselingRanked fourth-highest lender in J.D. Power’s annual customer satisfaction survey SoFi may not offer ATV loans specifically, but it is one of the best personal loan lenders in the market today. It’s an especially good choice for riders looking to migrate to an all-in-one financial platform since SoFi also offers banking products, investments, insurance, and more. SoFi personal loans can be used to purchase a side-by-side or a quad as long as it’s for personal use. Farms, ranches, nurseries, and other for-profit companies using quads to get the heavy lifting done may not qualify because SoFi loans can’t be used for business purposes. Soft credit pull to check rates? YesDeposit time: Same dayOrigination fee: NoneLate fee: NoneInterest rates (APR): 8.99% – 25.81% with autopay and SoFi banking discountRepayment terms: 2 – 7 yearsLoan amounts: $5,000–$100,000 Upgrade: Best for fair credit View Rates LendEDU rating: 4.9Can apply with a co-applicant or use your car to secure your ATV loan$200 sign-up bonus if you open and use a new checking account with your ATV loan Upgrade is more accepting of fair credit than most lenders. If you have a car, you can also use it as collateral for your ATV loan. Be aware you’ll be charged a title transfer fee, however. You can also apply with a co-applicant if you’ll be sharing your ATV with someone else who has better credit. Upgrade does charge more fees than most other personal loan lenders. On the flip side, you can recoup some of that cost if you sign up for a Rewards checking account at the same time as your loan and have at least $1,000 of direct deposits in your account within the first 45 days. Soft credit pull to check rates? YesDeposit time: One business dayOrigination fee: 1.85% – 9.99%Late fee: $10Interest rates (APR): 8.49 – 35.99 with autopayRepayment terms: 2 – 7 yearsLoan amounts: $1,000 – $50,000 Upstart: Best for thin credit View Rates LendEDU rating: 4.8May accept well-qualified applicants with no credit scoreCan’t apply for ATV loans with a cosigner or co-applicant Upstart used to provide better customer service, ranking above average compared to other personal loan lenders in 2022 by J.D. Power. In 2023, however, it ranked near the bottom of all lenders surveyed. However, it’s still one of your best options if you don’t have a good credit score or—indeed—any credit score. Upstart also uses non-traditional information like your education and employment credentials to evaluate your loan, allowing folks such as high-earning recent immigrants to get approved. So if you’re a newly-arrived European motocross racer looking for a new ATV, Upstart may have your back. Soft credit pull to check rates? YesDeposit time: One business dayOrigination fee: 0% – 12%Late fee: $15 or 5% of the overdue amount, whichever is moreInterest rates (APR): 5.20% – 35.99%Repayment terms: 3 or 5 yearsLoan amounts: $1,000 – $50,000 LightStream: Best for excellent credit View Rates LendEDU rating: 4.8Same-day funding via wire transfer available before 2:30 p.m. ESTRate-beat program offers a rate 0.10% below competing loan offers LightStream requires good or excellent credit to get approved for a loan, with about 22% of applicants qualifying for the lowest advertised rates. If you don’t have that, or if you have a riding partner who also wants to be listed on the loan, you can apply with a co-applicant. LightStream does offer RV loans with rates slightly lower than its general-purpose personal loans, although these are still unsecured. It doesn’t advertise ATV loans specifically, but it may be worth inquiring whether you can use its RV loan for an ATV purchase to access cheaper rates. Soft credit pull to check rates? NoDeposit time: Same dayOrigination fee: NoneLate fee: NoneInterest rates (APR): 9.49 – 25.49 with autopayRepayment terms: 2 – 12 yearsLoan amounts: $5,000 – $100,000 Pros and cons of a personal loan for UTV financing Many people use personal loans when financing an ATV, but it’s not the right financial tool for everyone. Here are the factors you’ll have to weigh when deciding whether to finance your next ride with a personal loan instead of a dedicated ATV loan: Pros Widely available Fast funding times Easy online application Cheaper than credit cards No down payment required No restrictions on vehicle type Can get funding before purchase Less repossession risk if you default Can split up funds for other purchases Helps build credit if you always pay on time Cons Higher interest rates and fees Harms credit if you default or pay late Generally not available for businesses Higher credit and income requirements How to choose a loan for your ATV financing Many people just accept the first ATV loan they apply for, but if you shop around first, you’re more likely to save money on your loan. That, in turn, leaves more cash left over for your outdoor adventures: gas, race entry fees, riding accessories, etc. Follow these steps to choose the right loan to finance your ATV purchase: Decide on what type of ATV loan you want Personal loans are quick and convenient, but—depending on your situation—spending a bit more time to apply for a more appropriate loan type can help you set yourself up for success later. Most people are looking for the lowest rates on an ATV loan, for example. In that case, applying for a dedicated ATV loan that uses your vehicle as collateral might be a better choice for you. Consider if you’ll be buying an ATV from a private seller or a dealership Powersports dealerships often work with partner lenders to offer financing on the new and used ATVs that they sell and may accept trade-ins—an advantage you won’t have if you buy from a private seller. Don’t forget to check your options for an ATV loan with local and nationwide credit unions. It’s often easier to find ATV-specific loans from a credit union versus a bank. Credit unions have membership requirements you’ll need to meet to get a loan, but many allow you to apply first to see your approval odds before joining. Use a loan calculator to estimate your monthly payments before applying Make sure that you’ll be able to make your payments easily—with room to spare—so you can focus on enjoying your new quad without having to worry about your finances back at home. “The best way to assess the affordability of an ATV or UTV is to have a budget,” says Steger. “This lets you know exactly how the monthly payment will affect your cash flow, bill pay, and saving routines.” Longer term, know what your potential expenses may be, says Steger. “If an ATV or UTV loan lasts three years, it’s important to know if another vehicle loan will begin or end or if significant home repairs will be needed,” he says. “Loan payments not only affect your current cash flow situation, but it’s also a good time to reexamine or reassess future savings goals due to the extra expense.” How to apply for a UTV loan If you’ve decided that a personal loan is right for your ATV or UTV purchase, you’re in luck: it’s generally an easier process than using other types of ATV loans that require you to use your vehicle as collateral. Taking a few extra steps along the way can help speed it up even further: Check your credit: We mentioned checking your credit score above, but it’s also important to check your credit reports for any errors so you have time to fix them before you apply. Unfortunately, credit report errors are fairly common. Get copies of your financial documents: Most lenders will require current bank statements, pay stubs, W-2s, and tax returns as well as copies of your ID to verify your identity. Check your rates: You can get prequalified for a personal loan with most lenders with a basic soft credit check. In return, you’ll get a loan offer with accurate pricing and terms. It’s recommended to check your rates with at least three lenders, but more is better. Fill out an application: Decide on one of the loan offers and reach out to the lender to get a full loan application (if they haven’t already provided one). You’ll also need to submit your documents at this time. Stay in touch with the lender: Many lenders offer automated approval, but it’s not uncommon to have someone manually review your application and ask for more details. If you respond quickly, you can speed up your loan decision timeline. Receive funding: Your lender may offer a few different funding options if you’re approved for a loan. Most lenders send funds via an ACH transfer, although you may also receive a paper check in the mail, a wire transfer, or even cash in some cases. Pay back your loan: Set up autopay on your ATV loan as soon as possible if you didn’t already do it with your application. Not only will you qualify for a rate discount with most lenders, but you’ll also avoid late fees and credit damage while you’re out enjoying your ATV. Alternatives to personal loans to finance an ATV Personal loans aren’t always the right choice for an ATV loan. Before you apply for one, make sure you thoroughly consider whether one of these alternatives might work better in your case: Cash savings Pros No monthly payments Own your ATV debt-free Earn interest while you save Avoid paying any fees and interest Don’t need to worry about qualifying for a loan Keeps your borrowing options open for other things Cons Doesn’t help build credit Can take a long time to save up enough If you’re fortunate enough to be able to pay cash for your next quad, most experts would recommend going this route instead. Rather than paying interest to a lender, you can earn interest on your savings and fully enjoy your ATV free and clear of any debt as you sail over the countryside. ATV loans Pros Lower rates and fees Easier for most people to qualify for Cons Not as widely available Longer funding timeline May require a down payment May be required to insure your ATV Lender can repossess your ATV if you don’t pay May come with mileage, year, or other limitations ATV loans—specifically for purchasing an ATV, not just a personal loan—work similarly to car loans. They’re secured by the ATV you’re buying, so you may be more likely to qualify for better rates with most lenders. Dealer financing Pros May be able to offer a trade-in Easy to arrange with your purchase Easier for most people to qualify for May receive special incentives or deals Cons Can’t use with private sellers May require a down payment May be required to insure your ATV May miss better offers if you don’t shop around Lender can repossess your ATV if you don’t pay May come with mileage, year, or other limitations Most powersports dealers will help you arrange a secured ATV loan with one of its partners, and may even offer special discounts or promotions on a combined financing and purchase package. These loans are quicker and easier to get, but make sure you still shop around to ensure you’re getting a good rate. Home equity loan Pros Very low rates No down payment required Can split up funds for other uses Cons Long closing timeline Not available for renters Expensive closing costs Requires good or excellent credit Typically requires at least 90% equity in home Lender may foreclose on your home if you default Most financial experts don’t recommend taking out a home equity loan for things that aren’t necessary or that don’t increase your home value, like ATVs. The rates may be lower, but the fees are quite high and you could lose your home if you default on the loan. Home equity line of credit (HELOC) Pros No down payment required Option to borrow money later Cons Long closing timeline Not available for renters Expensive closing costs Requires good or excellent credit Typically requires at least 90% equity in home Higher, variable rates can make repayment tough Lender may foreclose on your home if you default Again, financial experts generally caution against using a HELOC for things like ATVs for the same reason as for home equity loans. However, if you know you’ll need to borrow money again in the future, it can be a good way to keep your options open going forward. Credit card Pros No down payment required Can earn rewards points or cash back 0% intro APR credit cards help you save on interest Cons Very expensive Variable monthly payments Not accepted by private sellers Can harm credit utilization ratio Extra processing fee charged by dealerships Credit cards charge much higher interest rates than most other ATV financing options, so most financial experts recommend against this. However, if you are able to qualify for a credit card with an intro 0% APR offer—and can pay it off before the intro offer expires after a number of months—it’s essentially a free ATV loan. ATV and UTV financing FAQ How long will it take to get approved for an ATV loan? It depends on the type of ATV loan you apply for. Some personal loan lenders allow you to apply for and even receive your loan funds on the same day you apply. Other options, such as a home equity loan, may take two to six weeks. Is it possible to get ATV loans for bad credit? Generally, yes, if you meet other requirements. If you opt for a secured ATV loan it may be easier to qualify with bad credit because the vehicle you’re purchasing serves as collateral for the loan. It’s an extra assurance for the lender that they can repossess if you don’t pay back the loan. How can I get the best ATV loan rates? You can get the best ATV loan rates by opting for a secured loan and shopping around with as many lenders as you can. Working to improve your credit score and saving up a larger down payment can also help you secure a lower rate on an ATV loan. Can you get used ATV loans? Yes. You can use general-purpose financing such as personal loans or home equity loans for any type of ATV, new or used. Loans specifically for ATV purchases offered through dealerships, credit unions, and banks can generally still be used to buy a used UTV or ATV but may come with mileage or year restrictions. Is it easier to finance a new or used UTV? It may be tougher to qualify for a loan to buy a new UTV because these are more expensive than used vehicles and therefore require larger loan amounts. How long are ATV loans? It depends on the type of financing you’re using. Home equity loans and HELOCs can last up to 30 years, for example. ATV loans secured by your vehicle, on the other hand, are commonly offered with term lengths ranging from three to 12 years. Can I trade in my old ATV as a down payment? Yes, you may be able to trade in your current quad to purchase a new ATV. Make sure you know your ATV’s current value and marketability since, as with cars, you may receive more money by selling it on your own versus trading it in.